Fumage artist Julie Willan
I was Born in Rockford Illinois in 1967 and grew up in Ann Arbor Michigan. I loved the outdoors, horses, and a menagerie of animals I kept as a kid. In 1982 my family moved to California where I began studying Graphic Design and Illustration more seriously. When I moved to Texas in 1992 I met a fellow artist who talked me into starting Fine Art/Finishing business. With his help, and a few others, my business has grown into a success over these 28 plus years. Eventually, It was time to plan for a new adventure with my partner and we decided to move to Hendersonville, North Carolina, where we bought 5 beautiful acres in the mountains. I have built a new studio on my property, where I will be inspired to create wildlife art using Fumage as a main medium and what other kind of techniques that will inspire me for years to come!
I am an artist working in a medium called Fumage, in which I use an open flame to create soot on the surface of clay-board, paper or canvas. I then work into the soot medium with brushes, cloth and point tips to create unique beautiful animals and wildlife portraits. When I discovered Fumage art, I fell in love with the way it produced a subtle, organic foundation to work into. I could achieve both soft and hard-edged effects that were very pleasing.
I’ve loved animals and wildlife since childhood, when pencil and ink were my main medium. I spent hours drawing and studying animals and felt a connection specifically to horses and wolves that I still feel to this day.When I’m painting animals or creating wildlife art, I try to do more than look at the subject, I try to understand it. When I depict an animal, meticulous study of its musculature, bone structure, habits and habitat help me to not only refine what I see, but to hopefully reflect the animal’s essence. It is a soulful, spiritual endeavor for me.